News Home & Design Renovated Terrace House Has See-Through Stair of the Week By Kimberley Mok Kimberley Mok Twitter Writer McGill University Cornell University Kimberley Mok is a former architect who has been covering architecture and the arts for Treehugger since 2007. Learn about our editorial process Updated January 25, 2019 Share Twitter Pinterest Email ©. Nick Bowers News Environment Business & Policy Science Animals Home & Design Current Events Treehugger Voices News Archive Designing for a narrow site can be quite a task -- one has to consider where to put the stairs, how to best coax natural light in, and so on -- as every inch matters. In Alexandria, Australia, Anderson Architecture successfully revamped an existing terrace home sitting on a cramped, 1,506-square-foot (140-square-metre) site by using some smart small space design principles and making it feel more spacious, as well as adding a "folded-form," second-storey master bedroom at the rear -- all without expanding its original footprint. © Nick Bowers Seen over at ArchDaily, the Imprint House now features a completely redone floor plan that moves the living areas to the rear of the house, and reconfigures the layout so that the interior spaces feel more connected with the rear yard. The architects say: These innovations also allowed us to add 22 [percent] more space to the home – via a new main bedroom, ensuite, WIR’s [walk-in wardrobe], dining room and ample storage – without enlarging its footprint. From our point of view, sustainable architecture and space-saving measures go hand in hand. Through utilising “small home” design principles we borrowed light and created sight lines to extend views, to make small spaces feel larger. © Nick Bowers That idea of extending sight lines to connect spaces and to give an overall sense of expansion is carried over into the stair design as well, seen here with this intriguing cut-out that not only brings more light in, but also visually connects the inside with the outside garden. Moreover, things can be stored here, or it can also act as a cozy little spot to read. © Nick Bowers © Nick BowersThe kitchen has been cleverly conflated with the hallway to the dining area and rear terrace, in a way that isn't immediately apparent, but once you're in the thick of it, you can see that the new kitchen is actually quite long and large. © Nick Bowers © Nick Bowers Care was taken to install better alternatives for heating and cooling as well: To make the home more comfortable in winter, we installed environmentally friendly hydronic heating through the old and new parts of the house, fuelled by energy and cost efficient heat pumps. Provision for future solar panels was incorporated into the design of the roof, and a 2000L rainwater tank supplements the household’s water demands. Passive cross ventilation allows the home to cool down quickly and improves airflow on muggy days. © Nick Bowers © Anderson Architecture As we've said many times before, the greenest building is often the one that is still standing, but renovating the interior can help make older buildings more livable, energy-efficient and therefore longer-lasting too. To see more, visit Anderson Architecture.